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Frequently Asked Questions

Read our frequently asked questions from our clients about HR Support services from BedrockHR.

Unlike accountants producing statutory accounts, there is no legal requirement to have the involvement of HR practitioners in the management of your organisation. 

However, reducing the risks associated with employment (incorrect contracts, policies and actions) may be appealing as well as making the most of your investment in employees (performance, engagement and development). 

Managing people is also time consuming and our expertise and experience can be used to reduce the wear and tear that you face as an owner / manager. You may have someone in house who manages HR administration, we can provide the professional support and extra capacity that they may need from time to time.

Ensure that you set clear expectations for your employees, grounded in an accurate job description and clear performance review procedures. 

Ensure that your contracts are watertight, make sure that any restrictions on the activities of individuals whilst employed and after leaving are clearly defined and defendable in law. 

Ensure that you understand the steps that you are allowed to take to deal with poor performance and ending employment. Focus on engaging your employees to maximise their discretionary effort and contribution to the organisation

We work with you to define the role, work out where it sits in your team and suggest appropriate terms and conditions and then help you to draw up a job description. 

We can then advise on where to advertise (agency, on-line, linked in etc) and then help you with the recruitment process from shortlisting through interview, offering the role, providing the contract and then onboarding.

Firstly we will listen to you and find out the background and context to your concerns. Depending on the issue and any previous discussions with the employee, we will suggest a plan for managing the situation.  

Informal action is usually the first route, whether that is a simple conversation and agreement of behavioral changes required or whether that is setting targets to be achieved we can help you to formulate these. If there is a repeated shortfall in required standards, we can guide you through disciplinary or capability procedures, if you have none in place we can provide these or fall back on ACAS guidance. 

We will document the process followed and provide the necessary formal letters. If after trying other routes it is necessary to end employment, we can guide you through this, in the background or leading / advising in meetings. We will follow up with appropriate documentation formal letters.

Firstly we listen and understand the context and the challenges posed to the business of absence, either by way of short term absence (e.g. time off for appointments) or longer term absence (e.g Maternity, long term illness) Secondly we look at the options available, will a change in working hours be needed or who can cover the work in the absence of the individual employee or is it necessary to take on additional resources. 

We then plan the communication with the individual and how this will be delivered and join you in the meeting or provide an outline script for you. We provide follow up letters as appropriate.

There are three ways in which we charge for our services: 

Retained Services Our most popular service is the monthly retained service. This service suits many clients with a regular support requirement and allows time for us to get to know your organisation and the people within it so that when an issue comes up we are familiar with the context already. This is the closest arrangement to an in-house department with one key difference, you don’t need an HR manager on the payroll.  

Many clients need the full range of services but for a limited and variable amount of time per month. We have clients who retain support for half a day per month, others for a day and others with several days, depending on their needs.  Retained clients have a dedicated CIPD qualified HR Business Partner. 

‘Call off’ basis Time is purchased in blocks in advance which enables a lower hourly fee and setting up of arrangements in advance of issues arising. The fee is based on the number of hours purchased on a sliding scale. 

Project basis We respond to the need as it arises and you pay for our time as it is used or we agree a fee for the project in advance. The project may be as complex as a review of all terms and conditions of employment or as straight forward as the redundancy of one employee..

We have asked our clients this over many years why they stay with us and the 

most frequent answers are:

  1. Bedrock team members take time to get to know our business so it feels like they understand the pressures and challenges before issues arise.
  2. Bedrock are not to big to be personally involved and the advice given and actions taken are delivered with care and attention to detail.
  3. Bedrock are not too big to adapt to our needs, neither are they too small to provide a regular and consistent service
  4. Advice is pragmatic and not overly risk averse. We know that Bedrock will try to meet our objectives whilst helping us to understand the risk.
  5. We feel that no question is stupid and that Bedrock will patiently explain your options.

In summary, we have a small CIPD qualified team with 50 years HR experience between us across many sectors, this means that while you have a dedicated HR Business Partner, there is the experience of the whole team to draw on.

We are professional but also friendly and supportive. We want to build relationships that last.

Finally, we aim to provide a service that is the same or better than an in-house HR professional can provide, being available and committed in the same way but at a small proportion of the cost.

The Bedrock Approach

We take the same four step approach to all of our work, however big or small the task:

1

Understand

By listening to you and asking the right questions we can acquire the knowledge we need to give appropriate advice and or take the right steps needed to produce a document.

 

2

Consider options

What is possible, what might the effects be, what are the risks, what are the costs of each option and which best meets the needs of the client.

3

Put the chosen option in place efficiently and effectively

Whether it is advice or a piece of written work or a process to be carried out, we will provide a draft, obtain feedback, adapt and finalise the work to an agreed, timescale and in an agreed cost envelope.

4

Review and evaluate

Following an activity or completion of a project we look at what we have done, what we have learned and what can be done better next time.